Media Life: Big Emmy wins for Placer’s “Deadliest Catch” connection

Gilbert celebration slated for Tuesday; Classic "Fender man" on tap for Auburn gig
By: Gus Thomson/Media Life
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A “Deadliest Catch” episode, much of it shot from the understanding eye of local lensman Todd Stanley, has ended up wooing and winning over Emmy Awards voters. Stanley, a Lotus resident who grew up in Rocklin, was a key member of the production team that won the prestigious Outstanding Reality Program Emmy Award last weekend in Los Angeles. It’s a first for the wildly popular Discovery Channel show, which is about to start filming on its eighth season in Alaska. Stanley, the longest-standing producer on the program, said he’ll be joining in a celebration of the Emmy Award win on Saturday night at the River Shack and Coloma Club on his home turf. On Emmy Awards night last Saturday, his mother, Carole Stanley of Roseville, was able to bask in the glow of her son’s big win. Todd invited her as his “date” for the glitzy evening. She’s battling cancer for the third time in her life and was able to witness one of her two talented “Deadliest Catch” sons take home what amounts to TV’s top reality show award. Doug Stanley – Todd’s brother and an Auburn resident – also shared in the glory. The two brothers were part of the team that won a second Emmy with the show for cinematography. Ryan McPherson of Rio Linda, Doug’s wife Rhea Stanley of Auburn and Steve Wright of Truckee were part of the cinematography crew as well. The Outstanding Reality Program episode focused on the last hours of Capt. Phil Harris, skipper of the Cornelia Marie. Todd Stanley had forged a close bond with Harris during six years of filming aboard the crab fishing boat and kept filming with the gruff seadog’s approval as he battled to survive the effects of a massive stroke. Harris died in February 2010 and the episode “Redemption Day” was shown that July 13 to record ratings. Now it’s been honored as a big winner at last Saturday’s Creative Emmy Awards. “I miss Phil dearly – he was not just a co-worker but a good friend,” Stanley said. “It’s been hard for me to deal with his death and “Redemption Day.” A part of me almost feels guilty. But he lived his life and he gave up his life for this show. He did, literally. He’d be honored.” Celebration of Gilbert Gilbert, Auburn’s colorful man about town, will be celebrated at a gathering at Central Square on Tuesday evening. Plans are for a ceremony open to everyone to celebrate the gift of mirth and individuality Gilbert brought to Auburn residents and visitors over many years. Gilbert – his full name was Gilbert Ortega – died Sept. 2 at age 82. He’ll be remembered as an Auburn original who adorned his bike in streamers and pinwheels, garbed himself with unique outfits and created goodwill nearly everywhere he went. “Everybody loved Gilbert,” is the phrase Media Life is hearing most this week. So here’s a chance to keep that love moving forward. The celebration will include a sharing of memories, a moment of horn-honking and a few surprises. It starts at 5:30 p.m. at the corners of High Street, Lincoln Way and Lewis Street. And it may be a way to keep the idea of a statue of Gilbert and his bike alive. Classic music maker coming For fans of a certain Fender Telecaster sound and the Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen version of “Hot Rod Lincoln,” next Friday will be a rare opportunity to hear Bill Kirchen in Auburn. Scott Holbrook’s Keep Smilin’ Promotions is bringing Kirchen to the Auburn Event Center for a night of Tele-mastery. A veteran sideman who resides in Washington, D.C., Kirchen provided the landmark solo for the Commander Cody’s rendition of “Hot Rod Lincoln,” a song that made it to No. 9 on the charts in1972. Doors open at 7 p.m. Sept. 23 for the 8 p.m. show. Tickets are $18 advance at Cherry Records and Tribal Weaver, or $20 at the door for the all-ages show. The event center is at 145 Elm Avenue. Keep Smilin’ will also be presenting Dave Alvin & The Guilty Ones on Oct. 14. Alvin cut his teeth with L.A. New Wave/punk bands The Blasters and X before moving easily into the Americana realm. He’s a Grammy winner while Kirchen is a Grammy nominee, Holbrook informs Media Life. Media Life’s Gus Thomson can be reached at (530) 852-0232 or